Friday, October 31, 2008


I decided yesterday that the internet is taking over my life! Not really, but I do seriously need to reduce the amount of browsing and reading and overall internet surfing I participate in. With my trip coming up I really want to spend this next week preparing my mind and spirit for what I will experience in India. I also want to take some serious time for reflection and reconnection with my family when I return. So I'm taking a hiatus from the internet until the end of November. I will miss all you lovely people, but I promise to check in with you and see what you've been up to after the end of the month! I will still be checking my email since this is the only way to be notified about my work stuff, so if you need me feel free to email, but otherwise I'll see you after Thanksgiving :)

I leave you with this parting photo to keep me in your hearts until my return!

Monday, October 27, 2008

A Walk in the Park

Yesterday was a glorious day! The sun was shining; the air was crisp and cool; the trees were on fire with brilliant colors; I was with my family. It was a wonderful day! We had started out rough. Matt's 31st birthday party was Saturday, and the kids stayed up way too late, so they were not the most friendly little people on Sunday. We wanted to get out of the house to kind of reset as a family - work on all of our attitudes a bit. Going on a nice long walk seemed to us the way to do it.

For Matt and I this looks a little different. Matt loves the city - the sites, sounds, and smells of urban life. I love the country - the quite, solitude, and nature. Well, living 30 min outside of a "downtown" area meant that we went for the country :) Our town has a relatively new town park with an amazing walking trail we'd never been on. The trail leads from the playground, around a huge pond, past a creek and trails that lead to neighborhoods, past a frisbee golf course and an amazing old barn (that hides a small dumping ground for the park, it looks like). I took along the camera and caught some really nice (and sometimes goofy) shots of my husband and kids. We had a wonderful time of rest and relaxation as a family. Enjoy a little snapshot of our time!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Krochet Kids

Early this spring I was investigating the idea of starting my own business. I was looking into the idea that it might be possible to use my love of all things yarny to support my family and make an impact in the world. I had a vision that either the items I made or the money I earned could be put to a better use than lining my pockets, but I didn't know what that was. I came across an organization called Krochet Kids International that was doing something very cool... something much like what I'd like to do!

KKI works in Uganda to teach skills to women vulnerable to poverty and disease. First they are taught to crochet. The items they make can be sold for a profit which gives them a sustainable source of income when they graduate from the program. They are also taught personal budgeting, financial saving, and small business management, with the hope being that the skills they are given will provide them the ability to build a small business of their own handiwork to provide for their families.

The women who are currently a part of the program are all single mothers or balancing the running of their own households and their extended families' as well. They are women who have been displaced and, in many cases, orphaned by war. They are women who live lives in conditions that many of us can not imagine even exist. They are women who love God, love their families, and love their country. They are women just like you, or your mother, or your sister, or your wife.

So how does this impact you? In the words of Pamela, one of the women who is a part of KKI's program, "I want the American people to love us and they should pray for us as well so that we have peace in Northern Uganda." In addition to loving and praying for these women, you can also invest in their lives in a tangible way. KKI has a store that sells actual items these women make. Each hat is handmade by one of the 10 women currently involved in the program. Each hat is a piece of a woman's life. Each stitch is made with love and a hope that their circumstances can change. I know many of you have made the commitment to have a "handmade Christmas" - where all the gifts you give are handmade by you or someone else - why not add a Krochet Kids hat to your gift giving this year? You will not only be giving to the recipient of the hat, you will be giving to the lives of women who have a much greater need than many of us can imagine! If you don't want to purchase a hat, check out their site for other ways to get involved!

"How does my purchase support these women?" you ask. The woman who are a part of KKI are given a salary for making the hats. Your purchase supports the mission of Krochet Kids International, making it possible for them to provide the salary for the women and expand their programs to include more women in the future. "Proceeds from hat sales are infused back into the very communities from which they came in order to promote further development and aid in Northern Uganda. We seek to aid the continued efforts of education, healthcare, and clean water through the work of various local organizations." (from the KKI website)

Disclaimer: I do not work for (nor was I solicited for promotion from) Krochet Kids International. I honestly believe in this 501(c)(3) non-profit Christian organization and its impact on the lives of the Ugandan women. In my opinion this organization is a great model for how we can use our giftings to promote health and hope around the world! All of the information I have presented here comes from their website (much of it from this page). I cannot verify how the funds of your purchase impact the global community. Instead I am going on faith that this program is legit and does what it claims to do. Please read the story of how KKI got started and form your own opinion before making any purchases.